Today, Wednesday March 30, the day has finally come: it was the first day of the RoboCup European Open. Besides the fact that there were no matches yet, there were already many robots on the pitch, because of the testing. This was really essential, because the first robots already have to be at the kick-off of the first math at 10 o’clock tomorrow.

(diary and pictures by Daan de Geus, Robocup European Open)

robocup logoAt the @Home League, there were many teams that were busy inspecting the living rooms and the objects that they will have to pick up. The first @Home robots were already ‘walking’ through the hallways as well, moving between the visitors. In the same area, the Small Size League robots flew around the field with high speed, trying to find the orange golf balls that they will have to play with. This promises to be very spectacular the coming days. A little further in the building, in the Standard Platform League (SPL) area, the cute humanoid Nao robots tried to shoot and score, however the robots tended to fall a lot. Luckily, they could get up by themselves, most of the time. The SPL is definitely worth paying a vist to as well.

robocup2Of course, the big spectacle will take place in the Middle Size League (MSL), in the tent next to the Evoluon. Here, the members of the various teams were very focused, of course, in order to optimize their robots as much as possible. Eindhoven’s own team Tech United hopes to win the gold medal of this championship, and to defeat their Portugal competitor. Tomorrow, Thursday, the first MSL match will be a clash between teams from Eindhoven: at 10 o’clock, Tech United will play against VDL Robot Sports. (UPDATE: Tech United won, 15-0)

robocup4Besides the preparation for the matches, there was much more to see and to do for the visitors. School children from Eindhoven and other parts of The Netherlands came to the RoboCup en masse, to participate in fun technical workshops, like making their own robots, and to be surprised by the many demos, such as the music robots made by Kolja Kugler. These robots, which were making music on real musical instruments, got the attention from a great audience, from young to old, as can be seen on the pictures. This won’t be any different the following days; until Sunday, the robots will play in shows every day at 11:00, 13:00, 15:00 and 17:00. The children that were walking around the Evoluon were also very enthusiastic about the lectures and the cuddle robots, with which they could play and relax for a while. The little dogs and dinos were by far the most popular. Will you come and give it a try this week?

robocup3Tomorrow, Thursday, the competition will really get started. The schedules for the matches can be found on the website, please note that the times may be changed at all time. We hope to welcome you all the coming days, we are looking forward to it!

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